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I am currently under a desperate crunch at work, trying to get things wrapped up before my honeymoon.
Of course, this is when My Greatest User decides he will come to my office no fewer than five times today. Not once was it for an actual, legitimate issue that he had not created himself. Here were the top three for today:
MGU: "The scroll wheel on my mouse isn't working. I used to be able to scroll stuff with it but now I can't."
ME: *Looks at his mouse. All looks well.*
ME: "Show me what you're trying to do."
MGU: "I'm trying to scroll this Word document. See? It won't scroll!"
ME: ..."That's because there is nothing to scroll... The entire document is on your screen..."
MGU: "I can't move my mouse off the edge of my screen! I used to be able to move it from my monitor to my laptop screen and I can't do it anymore!"
ME: "Did you move your laptop?"
MGU: "Yeah I moved it to the other side of the monitor. That shouldn't make a difference, should it?"
MGU: "You know the DOS commands?"
ME: *Does a triple take.* ... ... "Huh?"
MGU: "The DOS commands. You know how you can use DOS commands to make the computer do stuff. Like Ctrl+M."
ME: "Ah. You're talking about keyboard shortcuts."
MGU (ignoring me): *Goes on a long, confusing explanation of something he's trying to do in Outlook and wants to know a keyboard shortcut for instead of clicking.*
ME: "I don't know what the shortcut for that would be and honestly I don't have time to look right now. I really need to keep working on this project."
MGU: "You don't know?"
MGU: "Oh... I'd have thought that with being a programmer you'd have gotten into the DOS commands."
I have never been so tempted to quit.
Screw our credit card processor so hard. The powers that be decided to sign with them because their rates were better. That's it. Never mind the fact that they don't make/work with mobile readers, which we need. Never mind the fact that their app is trash and is lacking basic features. Never mind the fact that their support is non-existent. Never mind the fact that when I request a new POS machine, I don't hear back for 6 months, and have to follow up again only to find they forgot about it. Never mind the fact that their POS machines can't handle 2 merchants like our ancient, "out-dated" one could, and so we need to spend double the money and have 2 POS machines sitting on the counter. Never mind the fact that their website is trash and lacks basic functionality. Never mind the fact that I cannot manage our user list (which changes CONSTANTLY), or even VIEW IT. I need to email them for all of this, and they may or may not respond. Never mind the fact that I'm going to spend my entire Friday scrolling through thousands of transactions, looking for one specific one, because their website doesn't even allow me to search for a specific transaction amount. Never mind all of that. Slightly lower rates, baby!1
Why is it always THIS freaking user??? Yes, this is the same one from my previous rant. ALWAYS emails me with a subject line composed of whatever random, vaguely-related-to-the-topic words happen to be jiggling around in his arsehole at the time of writing, vomited out in no particular order. Email body full of typos, wildly incorrect punctuation, and the actual content is completely nonsensical. Accompanied by a screenshot which is always cropped down so small as to be useless. And from what I can gather from this latest one, it looks like he's fallen for yet another phishing email. I SWEAR if that's what happened again......2
OK I can't deal with this user anymore.
This morning I get a text. "My laptop isn't getting emails anymore I'm not sure if this is why?" And attached is a screenshot of an email purporting to be from "The <company name> Team". Which isn't even close to the sort of language our small business uses in emails. This email says that his O365 password will soon be expiring and he needs to download the attached (.htm) file so he can keep his password. Never mind the fact that the grammar is awful, the "from" address is cheesy and our O365 passwords don't expire. He went ahead and, in his words, "Tried several of his passwords but none of them worked." This is the second time in less than a year that he's done this and I thought we were very clear that these emails are never real, but I'll deal with that later.
I quickly log into the O365 admin portal and reset his password to a randomly-generated one. I set this to be permanent since this isn't actually a password he should ever be needing to type. I call him up and explain to him that it was a phishing email and he essentially just gave some random people his credentials so I needed to reset them. I then help him log into Outlook on his PC with the new password. Once he's in, he says "so how do I reset this temporary password?" I tell him that no, this is his permanent password now and he doesn't need to remember it because he shouldn't ever need to be typing it anyway. He says "No no no that won't work I can't remember this." (I smile and nod to myself at this point -- THAT'S THE IDEA). But I tell him when he is in the office we will store the password in a password manager in case he ever needs to get to it. Long pause follows. "Can't I just set it back to what it was so I can remember it?"10
Context: We have a 96-port wall-mount patch panel. We're not even using half of those ports. "We" (read: "I") are completely redoing our network rack, as it's an ancient nest of wires. Currently all the ports in use on the patch panel just have random-length cables which are just drooped down beside the rack before running to switches. When I need to trace a cable from patch panel to switch, it's a complete nightmare. However, the cables going to the patch panel do have enough of extra length to do a rack-mount patch panel. I suggest this...
MGR: "Ehhh... I don't really like the idea of tying the rack to the wall... What if we want to move it or something?"
(this rack is in a tiny room and has been there since probably the 1800's.)
ME: "Well the problem currently is that it's all but impossible to trace cables. And even if I rewire it and bundle them nicely, it will still be a headache. With a rack-mount panel, we could just have super short patch cables and so it's super easy when I need to move stuff around."
MGR: "Okkkk..... So what if we would purchase like 3 or 4 switches to get 96 ports, then we run a cable to every patch panel port. That way we never need to change anything :)))."
Dude. Great idea. Let's drop hundreds to thousands of dollars on switches we don't need, rather than just doing a single patch panel. Brilliant. Also another great idea that, running thirty or forty unnecessary cables that we aren't even using. That won't clutter up the rack or use up valuable space or get confusing which ports on the switches are/aren't in use.
I'm trying so hard not to scream right now. I can't deal with this.
EDIT: It gets worse. Apparently part of the reason he wants to do this is "to make it simple". Currently we have our POS system running to its own switch, the printers are on another switch, etc. (yes I know some of this could be accomplished with a VLAN, this was set up before my time). But apparently "if we just had every single port wired then we could plug in whatever we want wherever we want and it wouldn't matter." I just... That's... That's not how you do a network.1
I HATE SURFACES SO FRICKING MUCH. OK, sure they're decent when they work. But the problem is that half the time our Surfaces here DON'T work. From not connecting to the network, to only one external screen working when docked, to shutting down due to overheating because Microsoft didn't put fans in them, to the battery getting too hot and bulging.... So. Many. Problems. It finally culminated this past weekend when I had to set up a Laptop 3. It already had a local AD profile set up, so I needed to reset it and let it autoprovision. Should be easy. Generally a half-hour or so job. I perform the reset, and it begins reinstalling Windows. Halfway through, it BSOD's with a NO_BOOT_MEDIA error. Great, now it's stuck in a boot loop. Tried several things to fix it. Nothing worked. Oh well, I may as well just do a clean install of Windows. I plug a flash drive into my PC, download the Media Creation Tool, and try to create an image. It goes through the lengthy process of downloading Windows, then begins creating the media. At 68% it just errors out with no explanation. Hmm. Strange. I try again. Same issue. Well, it's 5:15 on a Friday evening. I'm not staying at work. But the user needs this laptop Monday morning. Fine, I'll take it home and work on it over the weekend. At home, I use my personal PC to create a bootable USB drive. No hitches this time. I plug it into the laptop and boot from it. However, once I hit the Windows installation screen the keyboard stops working. The trackpad doesn't work. The touchscreen doesn't work. Weird, none of the other Surfaces had this issue. Fine, I'll use an external keyboard. Except Microsoft is brilliant and only put one USB-A port on the machine. BRILLIANT. Fortunately I have a USB hub so I plug that in. Now I can use a USB keyboard to proceed through Windows installation. However, when I get to the network connection stage no wireless networks come up. At this point I'm beginning to realize that the drivers which work fine when navigating the UEFI somehow don't work during Windows installation. Oh well. I proceed through setup and then install the drivers. But of course the machine hasn't autoprovisioned because it had no internet connection during setup. OK fine, I decide to reset it again. Surely that BSOD was just a fluke. Nope. Happens again. I again proceed through Windows installation and install the drivers. I decide to try a fresh installation *without* resetting first, thinking maybe whatever bug is causing the BSOD is also deleting the drivers. No dice. OK, I go Googling. Turns out this is a common issue. The Laptop 3 uses wonky drivers and the generic Windows installation drivers won't work right. This is ridiculous. Windows is made by Microsoft. Surface is made by Microsoft. And I'm supposed to believe that I can't even install Windows on the machine properly? Oh well, I'll try it. Apparently I need to extract the Laptop 3 drivers, convert the ESD install file to a WIM file, inject the drivers, then split the WIM file since it's now too big to fit on a FAT32 drive. I honestly didn't even expect this to work, but it did. I ran into quite a few more problems with autoprovisioning which required two more reinstallations, but I won't go into detail on that. All in all, I totaled up 9 hours on that laptop over the weekend. Suffice to say our organization is now looking very hard at DELL for our next machines.4
Screw the current Stack Overflow community so hard. It's still basically the only place to get answers but I'm sick and tired of the "you missed a period on line 7 why are you even on this site??" attitude. Look here, yeah it's my bad for missing that part, but I'm pretty sure that if you can't figure out that I missed an obvious ".ToArray()" when pulling my code together for a sample, then you aren't gonna be able to answer my bit-shifting question in the first place.26
Hey Google, maybe I'd subscribe to YouTube Premium if you weren't throwing midroll ads into my tutorials every 3:45.
It's stupid, because they're trying so hard to annoy me into subscribing that they've done the opposite and annoyed me into NOT subscribing. I'd have considered it before, but ever since their recent changes it's so frickin' annoying that I refuse to subscribe just on principle because I won't financially support those pieces of trash anymore than absolutely necessary.18
STOP PUTTING TWO SPACES AFTER PUNCTUATION THIS ISN'T 1900 ANYMORE AND YOU WEREN'T EVEN BORN YET IN THE TIME OF TYPEWRITERS33
MANAGER: "Hey Slug, I just got off the phone with $partner about $issue and they want to have a meeting with us to discuss it. Send them an email and schedule something for Thursday morning."
WHAT THE HECK DO YOU THINK I AM, YOUR PERSONAL SECRETARY!!??? If you're the one who has a specific day and time of day that works this week, and if you were talking to them anyway, then how about YOU schedule the meeting????? And of course $partner comes back with "Does 10:30 work?" and so now I'm just playing middle-man. Who could have seen THAT coming.........6
The other week a Comcast tech was out to install some new equipment. He was unsure whether an antenna could be placed outdoors, so he asked on a Comcast tech group chat. Within seconds he received a response from another tech: "Google it". It just amused me slightly that it's not just developers who get this response, and also made me a little bit mad because I know the frustration of being told to Google something even when I am asking in the right place.5
This will be long and it's more of an IT rant, but I think it still fits.
So a user comes to me and says "hey on my phone I can't see anything in my junk email folder but there are a bunch of emails in there on my PC." I take a look at the Outlook app on his phone. The "Junk" folder that he has open is actually in his deleted items folder. So clearly it's not the real junk folder. There are no other folders named "Junk", but there is one named "Spam". I open that and there are a bunch of emails in there.
ME: "Does this look like what you were expecting to see?"
USER: "Oooohhh so you think it's called "Spam" instead of "Junk" on my phone?"
ME: "I'm not sure, does this look like what you were expecting to see?"
USER: "See, I always thought junk and spam were two different things."
ME: (grinding my teeth and taking a deep breath) "Does. This. Look. Like. What. You. Were. Expecting. To. See?"
USER: "Yeah, looks like it."
OK THEN FRICKING TAKE YOUR PHONE AND GET OUT OF MY OFFICE.
I didn't really say that last bit, but I sure was tempted to.7
I hate my coworker. I'm currently working in IT, but both my former full-time programming and my IT work has taught me how to dig for things and find them. He has learned this, and is CONSTANTLY bringing me things that have NOTHING to do with my job because he's too fricking LAZY to do it himself.
"Hey, there's a credit memo on this Amazon statement. I'd like to know what it was for, thanks."
SO LOG ONTO AMAZON AND LOOK FOR IT WITH YOUR OWN TWO EYEBALLS. I've got my own work to do without doing your AP detective work for you. THAT'S PART OF YOUR JOB.
But unfortunately I REALLY hate conflict and so I just do it for him, seething the whole time and knowing I've just reinforced the behavior.
EDIT: Before anyone says it, no it is not because he's stuck. If someone is at the end of their rope I'm glad to help them. But I've taken to asking him "so what have you tried?" And every single time he says "nothing." It's gotten to the point he'll literally say, "Hey can you do this for me? I haven't looked at it at all or tried anything." But he just doesn't catch on.5
P.S.: This is not directed at anyone on here specifically. It's directed at all the devs I've met IRL and the comments I've seen on SO, who think that comments must be bad.14
The place I'm interviewing for apparently has a "no music" policy. Is this common? Music is a huge part of programming for me. It helps me get into a rhythm and ignore all the little distractions like people tapping their feet, etc. that drive me absolutely crazy. Am I expecting too much here???17